Manufacturing Stands To Lose If Advanced Developing Nations Don't 'Get Real'

July 5, 2006
For more than a year, dramatic disagreements over farm subsidies and agricultural tariffs have kept 149 countries belonging to the World Trade Organization (WTO) from putting together a new international pact. And now there's another reason for ...

For more than a year, dramatic disagreements over farm subsidies and agricultural tariffs have kept 149 countries belonging to the World Trade Organization (WTO) from putting together a new international pact. And now there's another reason for manufacturers who would benefit from more open markets to be concerned.

Such advanced developing nations as Brazil, China and India are balking at significantly cutting their industrial tariffs. And that's raised the ire of Frank Vargo, vice president for international economic affairs at the Washington, D.C.-based National Association of Manufacturers. "It's simple -- you cut barriers, you get more global growth and more development opportunities; and if you don't cut, you don't get those opportunities," he insists. "The advanced developing countries have benefited greatly from the global trading system. The time has come for them to get real and to realize they must now contribute to the growth of that system."

Susan C. Schwab, the newly confirmed U.S. trade representative, is making the point as well, reminding the WTO last week that manufactured goods make up 75% of world trade. "Members need cuts that are deep enough to go substantially into applied rates, to foster trade and to create new opportunities for economic growth and development," she said.

Negotiations in the current Doha Round remain at an impasse. Unless there's quick and unexpected agreement among the nations meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, 2006 is likely to end without a new international trade pact having been completed. The current talks are named for the capital of Qatar, where they were launched in November 2001.

About the Author

John McClenahen | Former Senior Editor, IndustryWeek

 John S. McClenahen, is an occasional essayist on the Web site of IndustryWeek, the executive management publication from which he retired in 2006. He began his journalism career as a broadcast journalist at Westinghouse Broadcasting’s KYW in Cleveland, Ohio. In May 1967, he joined Penton Media Inc. in Cleveland and in September 1967 was transferred to Washington, DC, the base from which for nearly 40 years he wrote primarily about national and international economics and politics, and corporate social responsibility.
      McClenahen, a native of Ohio now residing in Maryland, is an award-winning writer and photographer. He is the author of three books of poetry, most recently An Unexpected Poet (2013), and several books of photographs, including Black, White, and Shades of Grey (2014). He also is the author of a children’s book, Henry at His Beach (2014).
      His photograph “Provincetown: Fog Rising 2004” was selected for the Smithsonian Institution’s 2011 juried exhibition Artists at Work and displayed in the S. Dillon Ripley Center at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., from June until October 2011. Five of his photographs are in the collection of St. Lawrence University and displayed on campus in Canton, New York.
      John McClenahen’s essay “Incorporating America: Whitman in Context” was designated one of the five best works published in The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies during the twelve-year editorship of R. Barry Leavis of Rollins College. John McClenahen’s several journalism prizes include the coveted Jesse H. Neal Award. He also is the author of the commemorative poem “Upon 50 Years,” celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of Wolfson College Cambridge, and appearing in “The Wolfson Review.”
      John McClenahen received a B.A. (English with a minor in government) from St. Lawrence University, an M.A., (English) from Western Reserve University, and a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies from Georgetown University, where he also pursued doctoral studies. At St. Lawrence University, he was elected to academic honor societies in English and government and to Omicron Delta Kappa, the University’s highest undergraduate honor. John McClenahen was a participant in the 32nd Annual Wharton Seminars for Journalists at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. During the Easter Term of the 1986 academic year, John McClenahen was the first American to hold a prestigious Press Fellowship at Wolfson College, Cambridge, in the United Kingdom.
      John McClenahen has served on the Editorial Board of Confluence: The Journal of Graduate Liberal Studies and was co-founder and first editor of Liberal Studies at Georgetown. He has been a volunteer researcher on the William Steinway Diary Project at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., and has been an assistant professorial lecturer at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.


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